gharial

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A study of Saurian morphology: Pseudosuchia (part 3)

Both Armadillosuchus (armadillo-croc) and Simosuchus (pug-nosed croc), and their other conveniently named relatives such as “duck croc” and “cat frog” belong to the suborder Notosuchia, a diverse group of terrestrial crocodylomorphs. They are identifiable by their relatively short skull, small body size, and erect limbs. The variation of teeth shape between genera suggests that the group evolved various feeding behavior, including the likely-herbivorous Chimaerasuchus.

Gavialis, commonly known as gharial, is an extant member of the order Crocodilia which consists of three families, Crocodylidae (true crocodiles), Alligatoridae (alligators and caimans), and Gavialidae (gharial and false gharial). It is distinguishable by its elongated jaw, optimized to complement its piscivorous diet. 

And thus this post nicely concludes Pseudosuchia, which coincidentally finishes nearly at the same time as my Kaprosuchus-inspired Charizard. Thanks to everyone who suggested anatomy inspirations. It should be ready to publish tomorrow. Next week’s theme will be Pantestudines, specifically Testudinata (which is nice because I’m trying to finish Blastoise).

I’ve also made my daily drawings available as T-shirts as demanded by some. It will take me a while to process all the files, so expect me to add 3 drawings per 3 days like I do here. Links below.

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Daily Drawings T-shirt · Other Products · Find me elsewhere

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Ironychan Presents: ten animals that look like they’re supposed to be extinct and nobody told them (pictures mostly courtesy of Wikipedia).

THE OKAPI (Okapia johnstoni) - let’s start with the cuddly one.  The Okapi is the nearest living relative of the giraffe.  It is a shy, inoffensive animal that wanders around the African rainforest, completely unaware of the fact that it looks like a damned cave painting of itself.

THE CHINESE WATER DEER (Hydropotes inermis) - also relatively cuddly, as abominations of evolution go… but then you look at those teeth.  Yes, ladies and gentlemen, this is a saber-toothed deer, and yes, it’s a 100% real animal and not something the Ice Age movies made up.

THE CASSOWARY (Casuarius casuarius) - all those books that assured you dinosaurs were extinct are full of lies.  A cassowary is basically a shaggy velociraptor with the personality of a grizzly bear.  They’ve been known to kick people to death with a real-life slashing claw on the inner toe of each foot - and to top it off, they’re approximately twice the size of the original velociraptor.

THE GIANT ISOPOD (Bathynomus giganteus) - here comes the freaky shit.  The wikipedia link there will tell you that these are giant wood lice that eat carrion at the bottom of the sea.  My theory is that they’re the ghosts of extinct trilobites and they’re plotting our downfall.

THE GIANT WETA (Deinacrida heteracantha) - an enormous primitive cricket that New Zealand came up with in an attempt to compete with Australia in the ‘mutant horrors’ category.  That spine on its ass isn’t a sting - it’s an ovipositor.  It uses that to make more giant wetas.

THE PANGOLIN (Manis pentadactyla) - kind of a cross between an anteater and a pine cone.  This is actually a mammal and it eats mostly termites, despite having claws you could hang a slaughtered ox off of.  They walk on their hind legs, just for the sake of throwing a little dinosaur into the mix.

THE HOATZIN (Opisthocomus hoazin) - a big bird that lives in South America and looks like it was invented by Dr. Seuss… until you look closely and discover that it has claws on its wings and it uses them to climb with.  Much like the cassowary, the hoatzin is tired of being a bird and has decided it’s time to revert to dinosaur-hood and reclaim the planet.

THE GHARIAL (Gavialis gangeticus) - this fucker lives in rivers in India, quietly disguised as an ugly malnourished crocodile when anybody with eyes can clearly see it’s an undercover ichthyosaur.  With warts.  Look at that thing.  Even the turtle is terrified of it.

THE TUATARA (Sphenodon punctatus) - although it resembles a lizard, the Tuatara is genetically unrelated to any living reptile and it has three eyes: two in the normal places and one in the top of its head.  No, really.  And they live basically forever, so personally I think these are the same ones that just stopped evolving sometime in the Carboniferous.

THE COELACANTH (Latimeria chalumnae) - now here I’m being quite literal: these things actually did go extinct millions of years ago and yet there were a few bastards who were asleep at their desks and didn’t get the memo that nature was downsizing.  Thus they lurk in deep waters to this day, staring bug-eyed out at us to remind us that our nightmares can come true.

EYE OF THE GHARIAL

This is one of my all-time most popular shots of which was on display on National Geographic’s website (banner) for over a week, incorporated into a packaging design in the UK, and incorporated into a movie poster last year. The moral of this little tell, never give up on your passions in life, as you never know how far you can go until you try.

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There are just ten days left of my Kickstarter campaign to publish my children’s book, An Odd Animal Alphabet. I’m currently 65% funded, so every little bit helps! Please pledge today or spread the word. Thank you so much in advance! Click the link below to check out the campaign:

https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/1273167185/an-odd-animal-alphabet-0